How do you know what’s the most environmentally friendly way to wash dishes? You ask one of those nifty books that advise you of the “greenest” options for all the ordinary elements of quotidian life.
These books invariably (in my experience to date) recommend using a dishwasher instead of hand washing, as it uses less water. Which seemed odd to me – right up until I read the dishwashing section of How To Save Your Planet One Object At A Time by Dr Tara Shine.
Readers possessed of a better memory than mine may recall the post I wrote 2 1/4 years ago, about the garden patch and what turned out to be a Gestetner stylus found therein. I say a better memory than mine, because I had forgotten that I wrote it.
It refers to an “enormous black bag of weed roots – now too heavy to lift” and when I say enormous, I do not exaggerate. It looked like this:
Do not be fooled into thinking that this is your common or garden black rubbish bag, vol. approx 60L. No, no. This black bag was about a metre by two metres when flat, and when full it was, as previously mentioned, too heavy for me to lift. I can lift a ten kilo sack and carry it on my head. In a previous job I used to lift twenty kilo sacks of popping corn (though I was not foolhardy enough to put them on my head). I can lift and carry a large tub full of hardwood logs for the fire. I could not lift this bag.
I recently discovered a fabulous way of reducing the pile of things forming archaeological layers – or possibly new civilizations – in the mending basket. Bin? Absolutely not. Forced labour? Also no. The trick, it turns out, is to shift the goal posts.
For a ridiculously long time, I have had a flannel nightie in my mending basket, waiting for a mend. Button-bereft garments come and go, elastic waistbands stretch and are replaced, tears are darned or patched, but this was beyond me. The worn-through yoke needed replacing. Did I know how to replace a yoke? No. So I left the nightie in the basket until such time as enlightenment descended.